How To Do Something New

How To Do Something New

I recently mentioned that the weekly podcast I do with a friend reached its 25th episode. If you’ve read anything here or on The Juggling Writer, you know I write and juggle. I like photography, hiking, canoeing, and many other things as well.

And I do these things because I simply started doing them.

Don’t Begin with an Excuse

I’ve met people at jobs, at conferences — even in line at the grocery store — who are terrified to try new things. If they aren’t terrified, they still try talking themselves out of trying something new for a variety of reasons.

It’s sad that so many people begin with an excuse.

Old Tennis Balls

Juggling’s not necessarily an expensive hobby, but some of the props aren’t cheap — especially when you begin juggling many things. I’m sure I’ve spent well over $1,000 on juggling props over the years. But that spring day in 1981 then I taught myself how to juggle, it was with three used tennis balls found around tennis courts in the park behind my house.

It cost me nothing to get started doing one of the things I love most in my life.

Podcasting on the Cheap

I look forward to the day Shawn and I get better gear for the Men in Gorilla Suits podcast and we sound like a radio show, but if we went into it feeling like we needed to build a full-blown recording studio, we’d probably never have started. We record using my Zoom H2n recorder as the main sound, with Shawn’s Zoom ZH1 as backup.

Shawn’s recorder cost about 100 bucks. My recorder — about $175.

Zoom Recorders

The Exceptions

When I talk about things in this manner, people sometimes say, “Well, if you were trying to get into racing cars or yachting, you couldn’t afford it!”

If I wanted to race F1 cars or command a huge sailing yacht — true — it would be long odds that I’d see myself do either regularly. But…I know a guy who races his VW Golf on parking lot tracks made with traffic cones — and a small sailboat for one or two people isn’t out of financial reach for many people. So there are even ways around the exceptions.

Where There’s a Will…

Sure, “Where there’s a will, there’s a way,” is a cliché, but it’s with good reason: it’s true! If you want to do something badly enough, you find a way to do it.

I like photography, but more expensive gear is out of my budget. Thing is, I’ve taken photos good enough to sell with articles I’ve written using $100 cameras. The best camera in my bag (a Nikon Coolpix P7100) can be had for $350. I’ve seen people take photos with pinhole cameras they made out of recycled material that I liked more than images captured with cameras worth thousands.

Most of us aren’t planning to buy our own LearJet and learn to fly; most of us want to do something that’s within our reach on some level. It may not be the ideal start due to budget or time restraints, but it’s not impossible unless you believe it is.

Still not convinced? Watch this:

Speak Your Mind

*